A Little Bit About Us

We have an ever growing family. Mum, Dad, Son and partner Ellie 😀  And two wonderful Daughters, married to two fine Son-In-Laws. We're also blessed with four fantastic Grandchildren. Riches beyond belief!

We're a close family and very much enjoy spending time together. Forget birthdays and Christmas, we'd get together at the drop of a hat. The message would go out on our family WhatsApp group and before you know it, we're gathering at our favourite ale house, restaurant or more usually, our house! We really wouldn't have it any other way.

When we built "Madison" we wanted a boat that could accommodate a family, without having to rough it! Having loved ones around really is the best! With Maddison having eight berths and a spacious layout we're very happy to have achieved this.

Our "NO HIKE" Price Promise - From our experience, we know canal holidays aboard quality boats are expensive. But, we've enjoyed some really happy family times afloat. And as family people, we'd like to offer your family the opportunity to experience the same enjoyment at a more affordable price. That's why we don't put our prices up for summer, school or bank holidays. The same low price all season!

So. We're retired, the chicks have flown the nest and we now have time and flexibility to get you and your family afloat .

The Dad as a young boy steering a narrow boat
The bandage on my arm was due to my mischievous adventures in a scrap yard. I had the stitches taken out at Llangollen Cottage Hospital.

The Dad

Blimey, this photo is a long time ago..... Where has that time gone?

As a boy I was fortunate enough to experience a few canal boat holidays with my mum and dad.

I remember being accompanied by aunties and uncles, cousins and family friends as we ventured on our canal boat holiday. From memory, the boat was fairly big and slept a lot of people but was a little short on home comforts.

In fact, I seem to remember that one of the chores undertaken by the "Dads" on the boat, was the daily ritual of emptying the blue chemical toilet at a "not so" convenient disposal point.

Coincidentally, I also recollect an incident involving one of my uncles, who will remain anonymous. As he hauled a full toilet tank, stepping onto a wet gang plank and in one slow but comically graceful movement, slid along the plank, flung his arms into the air and ended up waist deep in water that slowly began to turn blue around him, as the contents of the chemical toilet began to leach into the surrounding water.... And that folks is why we don't have chemical toilets aboard Maddison.

Well! It made for very fond childhood memories. And I'm sure when you step aboard Maddison, you’ll make some lovely memories for your family to treasure. 

Minor dramas aside, to me, the real thrill of exploring the country I thought I knew so well and seeing things from a completely different perspective, has stayed with me for nearly fifty years.

So much so, since my boyhood, having never ventured again onto the canal, we decided to take the plunge (forgive the reference to my uncle) and had our very own narrowboat built. "Maddison"

I can't emphasise this enough, but it's strange that it takes two days on a boat to get somewhere an hours car drive away. But then I suppose the saying is very true, "It's more about the journey than the destination" 

A man steering a canal narrow boat
A woman seering a canal narrow boat

"We always enjoy family time together aboard Maddison. Whenever cruising alone, our kids always called to meet up and spend a few days cruising together. Extra hands for the locks in return for some home cooking is a fair exchange"

The Mum

Well! I'd never been on a Narrowboat before and was to say the least "resistant" to the idea of having our own boat built. 

However, we walked our little Cocker Spaniel "Maddison" (who the boat is named after) along the nearby canals and I began to see its charm.

We enjoyed talking to the boaters we met and listening to their journeys tales .

With some trepidation, I agreed and we spent a year designing and setting out Maddison to our requirements.

And I have to confess. I've been bitten by the boating bug have taken every opportunity to cruise on Maddison with our family and friends.

We've made lots of friends along the canal, that we would never have met had we not stepped aboard Maddison.

Now we've retired from our regular work and have some time, we decided to offer the opportunity for others to enjoy Maddison and spend quality time afloat with family and friends. 

We know that canal boat holidays can be expensive. If you're new to boating, booking a full week is a big leap of faith, without knowing if you would enjoy the canal experience!

That's why we decided to start with 3 night short breaks. We're happy to say that this has proved to be a great and inexpensive introduction to boating. We've had lots of first time boaters who return as friends for longer cruises aboard Maddison.